ER Doctors and pain control

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by jeanderek, Mar 8, 2003.

  1. jeanderek

    jeanderek New Member



    Recently I had to go to the emergency room because I was having a bad flare up. I wait forever to get back to a room. The doctor comes in and I tell her what all has been going on with me all of my illnesses and such. She sits and listens to me while i tell her symptoms and how long I have been dealing with it and my exhaustion and pain. I tell her all of the different medications I am on and the ones that I have tried in the past that didn't work all the while she sits there just looking at me almost with a blank emotionless stare. Finally I get done telling her everything that needed to be said and this was her reply to my pain
    " I now and never will believe in fibromyalgia, I don't think its real and never will. You are not having pain from fibromyalgia and I am not going to give you pain medication." Well needless to say it was all I could do to keep from coming up off the table and pulling her hair out by the roots lol. But I maintained.
    I looked at her and asked her where she got her education. How dare you tell me I am not in pain every single day of my life. How dare you say that I don't have extreme exhaustion even when I did have the rare night of over 3 hours sleep. Finally after about an hour of debate about fibromyalgia she gave me pain medication and sent me home. After that flare up and I started feeling alittle bit better I started looking up my rights as a patient for pain control. Its your doctors responsiblity to give you the medications you need to provide pain control and help restore quality of life. What I learned from all of this is you have to educate yourself about everything you can about this disease. You don't want to have to defend yourself without a wealth of information. If anyone else has had a bad ER visit I would love to hear your story

    Best wishes to all,
    Jeanna
  2. 2girls

    2girls New Member

    Hi Jeanna

    This disease gets a bad rap from the majority of the medical community. We did not diagnose ourselves! For this reason I never mention Fibro outside of my realm of docs, including ER's and clinics. Many docs beleive we are plain nuts IMO. I have visited the ER on a few occasions, the first time mentioning FM. Doc ignored me and sent me on my way. After that, I felt it best to keep this to myself, and it works. Last Feb/02 I was in severe pain - felt like my head was off balance, face pain, etc. Upon arrival the doc on duty immediately gave me a pain shot and ordered up xrays. He also gave me a script for Neurontin which worked wonders. I do not beleive I would have been taken seriously had I mentioned this DD.
    It is unfortunate but true.
    Don't let em get you down
    2girls
  3. JLH

    JLH New Member

    I agree with Jeanna. If I went to the ER, I think I might mention all of my symptoms, but not the fact that I have fibro. My daughter will offically be a medical doctor in May of this year. During her med rotations in the ERs, she has told me the same, too, because she says that the majority of all ER docs believe that anyone coming thru the ER claiming to have pain is just a "drug seeker". They all get this label unless it is apparent that you have a broken bone, an injury, or tests reveal something that proves to them that you are in pain. She claims that only 10% of the people seeking pain relief from an ER are legit. The drug seekers really ruin it for the people who truly in a lot of pain. She had caught so many of the "seekers" in so many lies about how they "got hurt", etc. that she says she can understand why the long-time ER docs feel that way. So, she remined me that if I ever go in claiming to be in pain, that the doc will quickly make a mental note that all I want is pain pills. I guess I'm lucky that the last time I went to the ER in pain that it was my heart and I ended up having to have a pacemaker put in. Guess I showed them!
  4. amilyne

    amilyne New Member

    hi jeanna, i totally feel for you, i cant find a normal doctor either and i always end up in the er..its gotten to the point where i actually have to tell them that i have a migraine..i am dx with occipital neuralgia--which is the nerves in the back of your head from your upper spine and mine tend to get pinched which results in horrid pain in the back of my head but no migraine med or anything less than percocet for me relieves my pain(whether its from fms or headaches)so now when i go in have needed to tell them that i have a migraine cause like you i seem to attract the non believer -deal with it type docs..so thats what ive resorted to telling the docs..btw good for you for standing up for yourself..maybe you came over one battle with a doc considering she gave in and gave you some meds..

    as for a bad er story i went to one of the hospitals and i talked to the doc and he said he totally knew where i was coming from and said he was glad that i was honest with him about my docs and that im very educated and know alot about what im dealing with and he believed that i was in real pain and not a drug seeker and all and he talked to his chief and he "the big wig jerk" decided that they werent going to give me anything and the resident said if i needed to talk we could talk and if were up to him hed give me something..i was so livid im like i dont need to talk i need to be able to sleep and i havent slept in days and thats why im here because no sleep= more pain and more pain=no sleep...then i asked if i could atleast have something for sleep since i just wasted money coming here for nothing and they wouldnt even do that..so thats why i now have resorted to the "migraine"..it seems to go over much better than fms.

    well good luck to you in the future.

    -ami
  5. JP

    JP New Member

    Hello Jeanna,

    I have been to the ER twice in the past 4 months. My visit prior was about 2 years ago for my back and about 5 years ago due to a bad accident. Anyway, I have had very positive visits. I took my MRI with me for my back and I was not seeking pain medication. I wanted prednisone to shrink the discs off nerves...I could not wait till Monday and I had not slept in two days with the nerve pain.

    I tend not to mention FMS during the consult. My first visit was my first panic attack...it was severe. The second visit was costochrondritis. I let the docs give it a name. My Family doctor tends to believe that FMS is secondary to another condition. My Rheumatologist tends to believe that as well, and he gave me the dx.

    As long as it is a syndrome there will be many beliefs. So, you might end up with an ER doc who believes that it is a terrible condition and you are treated very well and given what you need. However, the odds are not in our favor for that one.

    I list my medications and tell them what they are for...it is clear that I am not there for pain medication as I am on pain management for my spine and for widespread osteoarthritis. My doc and my Rheumatologist are well respected by our community and are not known as the local drug store...so it probably makes it even easier to be treated fairly in a state of emergency.

    I hope some of this helps. I also hope that your doctor supports you to get the pain relief that you need.

    Take care and I am sorry that you had such a bad experience...I know it happens a lot...Jan
  6. nancyw

    nancyw New Member

    Hi Jeanna: I was recently dx with fibro after being at the ER about 9 or 10 times for dizzy/vertigo/nausea, headaches, face numbness, blah, blah, blah. My prim doc I could tell was getting tired of me because I was trying to diagnose myself by researching my symptoms. Anyway, after one brain stem test at Audiologist, the technician mentioned MS and I looked up the symptoms and called my prim doc. She wanted to know who told me that this was a possibility, how, when, where, etc. Really defensive-like. We scheduled a appt with the neurologist and ruled MS out. Long story short - diagnosed by a doc I found myself who has fibro herself and meet with my prim doc last Thurs to discuss treatment. She walked into room and hadn't even closed the door yet and said, "Well, I can't do anything for you. What do you want me to do?" I had basically wanted a review of all the new meds that she didn't know I was on and discussion. We fiddled with my anti-depressants again and she said call her in a week. Needless to say, I was ticked off. I was starting to cough that day I was there, also, and she didn't even listen to my chest or ask me about it even tho I get broncitis. Ended up with flu-like symptoms for next 3 days and finally went to Emergent Care facility here. Got a doc that was concerned about my lungs, said they were inflammed, not bronchitis or pneumonia and gave me a shot of cortizone in the hip to help my breathing (weird, huh?), but she said there was too much going on with me at one time (meaning the Fibro pain). Anyway, slept good 4 hours last night and woke up WIRED and in absolutely NO PAIN. I've been up since 4:30 AM and it's 6:30 PM now and I'm still going. Just hung up with doc and she says it's only temporary, but enjoy it while it lasts. Think I'll be looking for new prim doc soon. I was going to file for disabilty, but now I don't know. Anybody else had this pain relief from DECADRON (coritzone)? Hang in there, everybody. We know we're not crazy.
  7. jeanderek

    jeanderek New Member

    Just wanted to thank you all for taking the time to share your stories. Its a crazy world we live in. I hope that we all have better experiences from now on but if not we are armed with knowledge to defend ourselves. Best wishes to all

    Hugs,
    Jeanna
  8. lumediluna

    lumediluna New Member

    ER's don't help.[This Message was Edited on 07/15/2003]
  9. Bambi

    Bambi New Member

    contract when they put you on the narcotic pain medications. Part of the contract is that you will not go
    to the ER for any pain related to your FM. A broken arm or chest pain, fine, but nothing to do with your FM
    pain. It is very easy to get put on a
    list through the hospital that gets you black listed to where you cannot
    find a pain specialist or anyone else
    to treat you. A friend in Texas had that happen to her when she moved there from another country. It is not
    the place to go for the pain of FM.
    Find a good pain specialist or ANY
    doctor that does pain management and
    believes in FM, call around first and
    ask if they treat FM patients. The ER
    is for emergency situations and they
    figure if you have a legitimate chronic illness you will have a doctor to treat that on an ongoing basis. Stay out of the ER or you may
    lose any chance of finding real help.
    Hugs, Bambi
  10. jeanderek

    jeanderek New Member


    Thanks for your reponse and your right when I started going to pain management I did have to sign a contract but the ER visit was before I started going. Now the pain management doctor has me on medications to take on a daily basis and breakthrough meds as well. When I had the ER visit it was shortly after I found out that I had fibro and wasnt seeing anyone for it yet. Thanks for reminding me though. Thankfully I have not had to go through that again since I have been getting the help that I need.

    Hugs,
    Jeanna